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$50 for a dual-band HT? Really?

Lvscott said:   The "Plus" version is $58.99 here.

And just look at these features!

More Stubborn Case, More Rich and Enhanced Features (2013 the Latest Version)

# Upgrade the frame material. Metallic, more durable and more fashionable.
# With full high two colors LED definition display, the screen exquisite clarity.
# The new English,German,French instruction, more convenient and more humanized.

More humanized instruction is always a good thing.

Not ham

Stupid topic alerts.

I have not fired up a radio in over decade, I have renewed the license though. HT prices like that almost make me want to dive back in. KE6RTY.

gedster314 said:   I have not fired up a radio in over decade, I have renewed the license though. HT prices like that almost make me want to dive back in. KE6RTY.I moved a decade ago, from a city with a vibrant 2m/440 community to one where the hobby is practically invisible. I haven't keyed a mic since moving and I let my ticket lapse earlier this year.

Thought this honey baked, lol. Anyhoo, if I point the aerial in the right direction, can I talk to the curiosity vehicle on Mars?

I purchased the UV-5RE which is the newest revision on eBay for just under $50. I figured if I have any problems with the radio, Paypal should back me up if needed.

thesillym said:   I figured if I have any problems[...], Paypal should back me up[....]

Good one!

I am called Ham, because I enjoy ham radio.

Rax said:   2-meter here is hopping busy. Too bad just about every operator in the area is an elitist loser. Kinda takes the fun out of it. Yea, that's why I sold all my gear about 8 years ago. Been licensed since 1963. YIKES! Just looked at my license and it expired 7 years ago !!!! That can't be right.

Edit: Phew ... just checked and I did renew back in '05. Good till '15.

I just ran across the non-Plus version (UV-5R) here for $43.99 (free shipping from overseas):

http://www.marcmart.com/two-way-radio-baofeng-uv-5r-professional...

The supposed better build quality of the UV-5R+ has me thinking that may be the better route (even though I prefer the looks of the UV-5R). Since the UV-5R+ came out recently, I would guess we'll see the price drop some more soon.

egs said:   I just ran across the non-Plus version (UV-5R) here for $43.99 (free shipping from overseas):

http://www.marcmart.com/two-way-radio-baofeng-uv-5r-professional...

The supposed better build quality of the UV-5R+ has me thinking that may be the better route (even though I prefer the looks of the UV-5R). Since the UV-5R+ came out recently, I would guess we'll see the price drop some more soon.


Remember three issues with buying a unit overseas, as opposed to a US dealer.
1. Shipping time, and will it arrive at all after you pay for it.
2. Warranty, what if arrives defective or breaks soon after? Contacting and returning a unit to Asia will be expensive, and at the very least time consuming.
3. If you are going to use it on a commercial license, does it carry an FCC certification? There are a number of variations of this radio. The stuff sold by the US importers seems to have that certification printed on the units. (I looked at the photos of a UV-5R Plus on eBay, and the Part 90 Certification was printed on the label on the back). I know that this was a Plus since the regular 5R has a black plastic back and the Plus has a shiny metal back (under the battery).

mbrenner said:   Follow to questions in this thread.

1. Difference between plus version and older model is case material has more metal, LED can flash as well as light, and newer firmware.
2. more metal in case may be implemented to form a better heat sync. Hence the life of the components will be longer, and the case may be more durable as well.
3.these radios do not have upgradable firmware. Later firmware has features that earlier ones lack. I think that direct entry of either a UHF or VHF frequency without changing bands is one such new feature.
4. Transmitting on the Ham bands requires a licence that while it is free or a small fee charged by some to give the test, requires study and passing a test. There are also limits on use of ham bands such as you cannot use them for commercial activities.
5. It appears that some of these are FCC part 90 approved so they can be used on Land Mobile Service Frequencies. These require a special license that is not easily obtained and not cheep. Your employer, or govt org or NGO may have one, but your variant of this radio must properly programmed and one of the Part 90 approved versions to operate under an LMS license.
6. FRS, GMRS, and MURS use is not legal in the US for these radios, they are not type accepted by the FCC for this. They will work, but use is not legal. Realize that the vast majority of GMRS use is illegal because GMARS requires a license that very few of the people why buy bubble pack type radios purchase this.. MURS anf FRS are license free but the radio is not type accepted and I think that the high power output may exceede MURS limits as well, high and low power exceede FRS limits as well as the Antenna type and connection.
7. Thr range radio to radio will be on the order of a mile in urban settings, and much further over water, hilltop to hilltop, flat prairie etc. ham operation with repeaters is entirely dependant on the repeater system. Linked repeaters can offer across the city, state or country if designed to do so. If you have access to a repeater network system like this you are probably aware of this already.
8. These are not good scanners, too slow, too hard to program, cant be set to skip channels directly from the keypad etc.
9. A large number of metro area police and fire depts are 800 MHz and can't be heard with these.
10, aircraft are AM and can't be heard with this also too low in frequency.


Can you recommend any that 1) are good scanners 2)listen to air traffic 3) Operate in the 800Mhz band?

Hypnosis4u2nv said:   mbrenner said:   Follow to questions in this thread.

1. Difference between plus version and older model is case material has more metal, LED can flash as well as light, and newer firmware.
2. more metal in case may be implemented to form a better heat sync. Hence the life of the components will be longer, and the case may be more durable as well.
3.these radios do not have upgradable firmware. Later firmware has features that earlier ones lack. I think that direct entry of either a UHF or VHF frequency without changing bands is one such new feature.
4. Transmitting on the Ham bands requires a licence that while it is free or a small fee charged by some to give the test, requires study and passing a test. There are also limits on use of ham bands such as you cannot use them for commercial activities.
5. It appears that some of these are FCC part 90 approved so they can be used on Land Mobile Service Frequencies. These require a special license that is not easily obtained and not cheep. Your employer, or govt org or NGO may have one, but your variant of this radio must properly programmed and one of the Part 90 approved versions to operate under an LMS license.
6. FRS, GMRS, and MURS use is not legal in the US for these radios, they are not type accepted by the FCC for this. They will work, but use is not legal. Realize that the vast majority of GMRS use is illegal because GMARS requires a license that very few of the people why buy bubble pack type radios purchase this.. MURS anf FRS are license free but the radio is not type accepted and I think that the high power output may exceede MURS limits as well, high and low power exceede FRS limits as well as the Antenna type and connection.
7. Thr range radio to radio will be on the order of a mile in urban settings, and much further over water, hilltop to hilltop, flat prairie etc. ham operation with repeaters is entirely dependant on the repeater system. Linked repeaters can offer across the city, state or country if designed to do so. If you have access to a repeater network system like this you are probably aware of this already.
8. These are not good scanners, too slow, too hard to program, cant be set to skip channels directly from the keypad etc.
9. A large number of metro area police and fire depts are 800 MHz and can't be heard with these.
10, aircraft are AM and can't be heard with this also too low in frequency.


Can you recommend any that 1) are good scanners 2)listen to air traffic 3) Operate in the 800Mhz band?


This is a real good magazine, 1/2 the info in this magazine is all about scanners.
You can get one free back issue.
http://www.monitoringtimes.com/

Hypnosis4u2nv said:   Can you recommend any that 1) are good scanners 2)listen to air traffic 3) Operate in the 800Mhz band?Aircraft radio is AM. All of the analog traffic above it on the VHF band, including the 2m band uses FM. It's a big reason few VHF-UHF transceivers are made that can do AM/Aeronautical radio.

The yeasu ht's can mostly all do AM receive and make a far better scanner than these cheapies

Hypnosis4u2nv said:   mbrenner said:   Follow to questions in this thread.

1. Difference between plus version and older model is case material has more metal, LED can flash as well as light, and newer firmware.
2. more metal in case may be implemented to form a better heat sync. Hence the life of the components will be longer, and the case may be more durable as well.
3.these radios do not have upgradable firmware. Later firmware has features that earlier ones lack. I think that direct entry of either a UHF or VHF frequency without changing bands is one such new feature.
4. Transmitting on the Ham bands requires a licence that while it is free or a small fee charged by some to give the test, requires study and passing a test. There are also limits on use of ham bands such as you cannot use them for commercial activities.
5. It appears that some of these are FCC part 90 approved so they can be used on Land Mobile Service Frequencies. These require a special license that is not easily obtained and not cheep. Your employer, or govt org or NGO may have one, but your variant of this radio must properly programmed and one of the Part 90 approved versions to operate under an LMS license.
6. FRS, GMRS, and MURS use is not legal in the US for these radios, they are not type accepted by the FCC for this. They will work, but use is not legal. Realize that the vast majority of GMRS use is illegal because GMARS requires a license that very few of the people why buy bubble pack type radios purchase this.. MURS anf FRS are license free but the radio is not type accepted and I think that the high power output may exceede MURS limits as well, high and low power exceede FRS limits as well as the Antenna type and connection.
7. Thr range radio to radio will be on the order of a mile in urban settings, and much further over water, hilltop to hilltop, flat prairie etc. ham operation with repeaters is entirely dependant on the repeater system. Linked repeaters can offer across the city, state or country if designed to do so. If you have access to a repeater network system like this you are probably aware of this already.
8. These are not good scanners, too slow, too hard to program, cant be set to skip channels directly from the keypad etc.
9. A large number of metro area police and fire depts are 800 MHz and can't be heard with these.
10, aircraft are AM and can't be heard with this also too low in frequency.


Can you recommend any that 1) are good scanners 2)listen to air traffic 3) Operate in the 800Mhz band?


In metro areas 800 systems are trunked. This means that they have a group of frequencies and transmissions hop between them based on the information on a control channel. There are a number of these systems operating analog as well as some digital ones. In my area all the law enforcement transmissions are encrypted, so they can't be monitored. There are many scanners available and you choice will be determined on what systems are being used in your area and what you wish to listen to. The digital trunked stuff can run many hundreds of dollars so hope they have none of that in your area.

I didn't think any ham radio or affordable commercial radio will really perform good 800 MHz trunked scanning. Even VHF air is not super common on ham radios. I would recommend a separate dedicated scanner and get a radio like this one for communication.

Even if your public safety or other stuff you want to listen to is withen the range of this radio run the risk of accidental transmission on these frequencies if you monitor them unless you program them carefully.

Thanks for all the informative responses.

One last question: If I use a department radio for communication, can I program this to transmit on those frequencies and do I need to have a license to do it?

Hello cq cq cq 20! My Dad even reached Cuba!

Hypnosis4u2nv said:   Thanks for all the informative responses.

One last question: If I use a department radio for communication, can I program this to transmit on those frequencies and do I need to have a license to do it?


If your version is FCC part 90 certified and you program it correctly and you have permission from your department, normally yes.

Assuming that your department is operating under a properly granted licence in the LMS bands, and not running MURS, or GMARS (radios illegally, or under the low power personal licences). For LMS the licence granted to your department by the FCC has a radio count and power output as well as transmission type associated with it. Operating your radio must not go outside those parameters. Further no wide band operation is allowed in the LMS (non ham, GMARS) bands after December 31st this year. Your departments radios and repeaters need to be switched over by then and your departments licence updated to reflect narrowband emissions, your HT must only transmit narrowband as well when in the LMS bands. You can operate narrowband or wide band now, if your licence allows it and your department does, but Jan 1 narrowband only. The UV-5r supports both wide and narrow band. Ham will remain wide band even after January 1. So if you are Amature Radio licenced you will still be operating wide band on those frequency blocks.

Find an Amateur Radio License Exam in Your Area.
http://www.arrl.org/find-an-amateur-radio-license-exam-session


All you need to become an Amateur Radio Operator ( Study Materials )
http://www.arrl.org/studying-for-a-technician-license

FYI,

I received my UV-5R Plus today from Amazon. The supplier sent the European Version, so it has the two round pins not the US Blade type power supply. That issue is relitively minor however, because the radio has European Lables and lacks the FCC ID label, so it cannot be legally operated in the US outside of the Ham Bands. I am trying to get an exchange, but I suspect that the importer will force me to just get ask for a refund through Amazon.

My impressions of the radio are that it seems like it has good build quality, and a nice compact size. The 3 color LCD is nice and do is the inclusion of an LED lamp. While you can program some functions from the keyboard, it really needs to be used with the software because so many functions need to be accessed exclusively by software. IMHO the main MISSING FEATURES are the ability to transfer the contents of a memory channel into the VFO. Also the ability with the software or keyboard passcode to lock the radio into a channel mode and block VFO transmission use (which should be a requirement of part 90 certification). I'm not sure how these radios passed. So if you got a US labeled unit you could use it on the LMS service with careful operation but it is far to easy for a non technical user to end up in VFO mode and transmitting where they shouldn't.

The scanning is slow and the inability to exclude scanned channels from the keypad is an issue. You can listen to FM Broadcast and direct enter the frequencies. So for a Ham or proficient radio user who wished LMS access it could be a very worthwhile purchase, provided you get a US labled unit, but it is not optimal for Ham or LMS use. Maybe a better value than some of the Wouxons depending on your prefference. It's less than half of the price of the UV-6D for example and it has 2.5 MHz steps unlike the some of Wouxun models.

I got the US model (I think). It did come with a US-style wall wart for the drop in charger. The seller in my case was BrainyTrade via Amazon. The labeling is visible when you remove the battery and includes the CE mark, the CMIIT ID number (which I think only applies to China) and the FCC logo. It doesn't have an FCC ID number or say anything about Part 90, but I'm not sure what the labeling requirements for Part 90 are.

Price drop of a $1....

I decided to cancel the order because it doesn't support the transmitting frequencies my department uses..

I ordered a programming cable for it, if anyone is interested in purchasing one, drop me a PM for a price..

I had a heck of a time programming this radio using a friend's cable. The radio I have has the newest firmware and the version of CHIRP that I found would not work with it. The Baofeng software would also refuse to connect with the radio. Finally I found special Baofeng programming software for the lastest firmware at radioshop888. That finally worked.

In my application, we hand radios out to non-technical people so we pre-program them and lock them down as much as possible so they won't mess them up. This radio can be dumbed down pretty well but not completely. For example, there seems to be no way to completely turn off the alarm feature. Also, there seems to be no way from keeping the display from showing two channels at a time although you can make sure the receiver only listens to one channel at a time. The FM radio feature can be turned off completely. Also, you can replace the display of the frequency with a friendly display of a channel name. That's a big plus for us.

So far, for the price, nothing can touch this gem.

PugRanch said:   I had a heck of a time programming this radio using a friend's cable. The radio I have has the newest firmware and the version of CHIRP that I found would not work with it. The Baofeng software would also refuse to connect with the radio. Finally I found special Baofeng programming software for the lastest firmware at radioshop888. That finally worked.

In my application, we hand radios out to non-technical people so we pre-program them and lock them down as much as possible so they won't mess them up. This radio can be dumbed down pretty well but not completely. For example, there seems to be no way to completely turn off the alarm feature. Also, there seems to be no way from keeping the display from showing two channels at a time although you can make sure the receiver only listens to one channel at a time. The FM radio feature can be turned off completely. Also, you can replace the display of the frequency with a friendly display of a channel name. That's a big plus for us.

So far, for the price, nothing can touch this gem.


The real issue with this radio for non-technical users is that you can't stop them from going into frequency mode (the VFO) and transmitting anywhere in the UHF or VHF band. The memories are generally safe from accidental overwrite, but you really can't lock these down like a true commercial radio. If you look at the Wouxun kd-UV6D for example, it has the full capability to safely be operated by non technical users. You can lock the radio onto memory only mode and the radio will require a pass code to get into VFO mode or use keyboard functions. You can also display only one channel if you wish. The down side is that the radio costs 3x as much and is a bit larger, but it is water resistant.

I'm going to get a pair of US spec. UV-5R plus units to have as back up radios but plan on using my Wouxon mostly and would not recommend letting non Hams use the UV-5R Plus because they can't be made nearly fool proof enough.

Getting really old with all the HAM police out there....screw the FCC crap. As long as you operate the
device WITHIN your licensed frequencies you will have NOTHING to worry about.

Check this radio/phone out:

ebay phone/radio

Puxing PX-D03, I have one. Pretty cool and worth the few extra dollars. A little tricky to get used to but it works!

mbrenner said:   The real issue with this radio for non-technical users is that you can't stop them from going into frequency mode (the VFO) and transmitting anywhere in the UHF or VHF band.

That's a good point, luckily I don't need to worry about malicious users. I'm only concerned about accidental changes and you'd have to deliberately unlock the radio to get to VFO mode. We evaluated an Icom commercial radio which was far simpler than this. Basically, a volume knob and a channel knob was all the user had access to. Only problem was the channel knob didn't offer much resistance so it was easily knocked off the correct channel. A similar older radio from Motorola had pretty much the same UI, but the knobs offered a lot more resistance. It's the details that matter.

Anyway, like everyone else, we are trying to comply with the narrowbanding requirement and have to replace our current equipment. We are looking at Wouxun as well but we need 20 radios so the price difference is a big factor. The UV-5R starts field testing tomorrow.

prayerfails said:   Getting really old with all the HAM police out there....screw the FCC crap. As long as you operate the
device WITHIN your licensed frequencies you will have NOTHING to worry about.

Check this radio/phone out:

ebay phone/radio

Puxing PX-D03, I have one. Pretty cool and worth the few extra dollars. A little tricky to get used to but it works!


No one is the ham police here. Quite the opposite, for the ham bands there are no legal issues with this radio. For LMS maybe. Any problems would be with the FCC, not Hams. The chances of enforcement by the FCC as you have mentioned, with prudent use within your licensed frequencies are next to nonexistent. This is quite true. For a few like myself, we work for municipalities, state or federal agencies so we should be mindful of even technicalities that would lead to violations of FCC rules when using equipment in connection with our official duties. If you work for John Smiths moving and storage and use these on your licensed frequencies in your storage facility, really a non issue, when I collaborate with my state agency's police department, I would be wise to use a type accepted radio. It is the law and also the policy of my employer.

I have not found an easy way to prevent accidentally switching to VFO on the UV-5R plus. It seems like you can lock the keyboard, but then users can't switch between memory channels either, we use 7 At work, some are repeater and some are simplex so memory channels have to be switched but the radio should avoid going to VFO. Perhaps I am mistaken. I have only spent a few minutes with the radio.

mbrenner said:   
I have not found an easy way to prevent accidentally switching to VFO on the UV-5R plus. It seems like you can lock the keyboard, but then users can't switch between memory channels either, we use 7 At work, some are repeater and some are simplex so memory channels have to be switched but the radio should avoid going to VFO. Perhaps I am mistaken. I have only spent a few minutes with the radio.

You are correct, you can't change the channel when the radio is locked. We actually view this as a positive. Different agencies will have different needs obviously.

In some ways this radio is frustrating because it almost gets there but barely falls short. The frustration is doubled because all of the necessary changes are firmware changes. The hardware is fine, it just needs slightly better firmware. There are probably a dozen tiny little tweaks that I could suggest but I don't think the Chinese engineers read FW.

As for Part 90 compliance, this radio is sold all over the web as part 90 compliant. My state requires that we use part 90 compliant radios. If anyone ever asks, I will point them to all the sites that say it is part 90 compliant. That's all theoretical though because nobody will ever question it. What they DO question is wideband ham gear modified to transmit out of band. They are on a warpath to get rid of that stuff. They will be delighted with this radio. I can only speak for my state and my agency of course.

I'll definitely be putting it through it's paces the rest of this year to determine if it's durable enough and to make sure we can live with the shortcomings. Maybe Wouxun will respond with a better price.

PugRanch said:   mbrenner said:   
I have not found an easy way to prevent accidentally switching to VFO on the UV-5R plus. It seems like you can lock the keyboard, but then users can't switch between memory channels either, we use 7 At work, some are repeater and some are simplex so memory channels have to be switched but the radio should avoid going to VFO. Perhaps I am mistaken. I have only spent a few minutes with the radio.

You are correct, you can't change the channel when the radio is locked. We actually view this as a positive. Different agencies will have different needs obviously.

In some ways this radio is frustrating because it almost gets there but barely falls short. The frustration is doubled because all of the necessary changes are firmware changes. The hardware is fine, it just needs slightly better firmware. There are probably a dozen tiny little tweaks that I could suggest but I don't think the Chinese engineers read FW.

As for Part 90 compliance, this radio is sold all over the web as part 90 compliant. My state requires that we use part 90 compliant radios. If anyone ever asks, I will point them to all the sites that say it is part 90 compliant. That's all theoretical though because nobody will ever question it. What they DO question is wideband ham gear modified to transmit out of band. They are on a warpath to get rid of that stuff. They will be delighted with this radio. I can only speak for my state and my agency of course.

I'll definitely be putting it through it's paces the rest of this year to determine if it's durable enough and to make sure we can live with the shortcomings. Maybe Wouxun will respond with a better price.


Good points here. The crudeness of the firmware is shared by all the Chinese imports, the Wouxons have issues too. Why wouldn't they put in a keyboard accessible skip channel function as part of scanning? You have to do this from the PC program. Seems like a no brainier. Also you need a copy Mem channel to VFO function so you can more easily modify and create new presets. This is all ham radio stuff that has Bren around for 20 years on the Japaneese dual band rigs. Ideally the memory channels would be bankable (maybe in banks of 10) so you could scan a memory bank. I would love if the voice would also announce the settings chosen in the menus as well. This would take more memory but would be usefull for visually challenged persons and in visually challenging situations.

I completely agree about people using Ham gear out of band. It not type accepted, and now that you can get affordable part 90 radios that will do both for under 200 bucks there is no excuse. I suspect that the Wouxun radios will be more durable than this one. I'm still getting a pair because they are so small and easy to pack in my grab and go bag or pockets.

And yes, keyboard lock, lock to memory channels only, and transmit prohibit lock would be nice levels of locking options. As well as assigning certain memory channels to a transmit level of "No". So you could have Hi, Low and No as transmit options. If I were designing from scratch I would have multiple profiles, so the same radio could behave differently depending on which profile was active. So for a fire dept radio, you could have a profile for fireman, and fire explorer for example. Perhaps the explorers could only transmit on certain channels but monitor all of them. You could then load a different profile on a mutual aid situation in another county, or when working with another agency. These profiles would all be stored inside the radio and called up requiring a password key. You really don't want to have to have a PC in the field to load up another profile you would have to do now.

Forgive my ignorance, buy is there a HT radio that transmits beyond the 174Mhz frequency?

Hypnosis4u2nv said:   Forgive my ignorance, buy is there a HT radio that transmits beyond the 174Mhz frequency?

In the VHF RF bands above 174Mhz was assigned to Commercial TV and as far as I know has not been opened up to other uses. There are also some low power things running there like wireless microphones but these are not sold much today. The next open place is 220 MHz where there is some ham and private mobile. There are 220 radios made to access this band. I think that you can get Wouxuns configured this way, but it is a separate radio. There are also some tri band and Japanese Ham radios that can do it. There aren't a lot of usable frequencies there however. So there is little or no legal use for transmitting above 174 on an HT at this time.

See: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/df/United_States...

The price is in a free fall....

The price is $42.00 at http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009MAXPBU. The first hit on Amazon may not be the lowest price. Need to visit the other sellers on Amazon.

I have the UV 5R Plus, but got shipped with chinese speaking. Can anyone help me with getting it changed to english? DTS589@msn.com Thanks

Where did you order from?

dts said:   I have the UV 5R Plus, but got shipped with chinese speaking. Can anyone help me with getting it changed to english? DTS589@msn.com Thanks

Should be MENU 14, MENU, then hit up arrow a few times until you see "ENG" then hit MENU to confirm then exit. Your choices should be ENG, CHI, and OFF. The plus models should have english, osime older ones are Chinese only.

Or I suppose you could learn Chinese (whatever regional dialect the radio speaks).

dts said:   I have the UV 5R Plus, but got shipped with chinese speaking. Can anyone help me with getting it changed to english? DTS589@msn.com Thanks

Check that option 14 "VOICE" lets you cycle through the language options, it does for the standard UV-5R even though the documentation claims the options are ON/OFF that is incorrect.



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